Kodi users who illegally watch films and TV shows could face up to 10 years in prison

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A new law has been passed which could mean ten years in prison for those using their Kodi box to watch illegal streams.

The Digital Economy Act received Royal Assent last week, which means it has now officially passed into law.

The changes now mean the maximum prison sentence has been increased from two to ten years.

The act will also cover broadband speeds, access to online pornography and government data-sharing.

Technically, the Kodi software is not illegal, but streaming any copyrighted content using the open-source software is.

Matt Hancock, the minister of state for digital and culture, said: "I’m delighted the Digital Economy Act has become law.

"This legislation will help build a more connected and stronger economy. The Act will enable major improvements in broadband rollout, better support for consumers, better protection for children on the Internet, and further transformation of government services.

Talking to the Mirror, chief executive of FACT Kieron Sharp said the copyright measures included in the bill are primarily targeted at those committing a serious offense. Anyone "making a business" out of selling illegal content could potentially face up to ten years rather than two.

He also stated that It is extremely unlikely those who casually stream a couple of movies every once in a while would prosecuted to such extremes.

What is Kodi?

Kodi is a free, open-source streaming app which was originally created for the Microsoft Xbox originally called Media Center.

The system gives any device from smartphones to TVs the ability to stream files from the internet using third-party apps.